Bottom Feeders: The Ass End of the ’90s, Vol. 36
With Bottom Feeders we take a look at the songs on the Billboard Hot 100 that only got a little love. It’s an A-Z look at songs that charted no higher than #41 in the decade. Take a listen, enjoy and comment. And don’t forget, information on the top 40, airplay and bubbling under charts are on pages 2-4.
Section 1: The Ass End
Jeff Healey Band
“Lost In Your Eyes” 1993, #91 (3 weeks) (download)
There’s something ironic about Jeff Healey having two Hot 100 hits both with the word “Eyes” in the title (“Angel Eyes” in 1989 is the other). There is absolutely nothing ironic about the sappiness of this tune. It’s a shame that so much talent went to waste on a terrible track like this.
“Secret” 1991, #64 (8 weeks) (download)
If this isn’t Heart’s low point, it’s certainly close. Both 1990’s Brigade and 1993’s Desire Walks On were equally dreadful records and this is coming from someone that actually liked their mid-80s pop comeback. While “Secret” isn’t a terrible tune, it’s the same song as 50 others in this time frame.
I’ve preordered the new Wilson sisters autobiography (Kicking and Dreaming: A Story of Heart, Soul, and Rock and Roll) that comes out on the 18th and can’t wait to read about this pop period they had. That and of course the luscious Nancy Wilson having all kinds of dirty fun.
“Do You” 1998, #89 (2 weeks) (download)
It would seem kind of surprising that Heather B. would have a hit this late in the game considering she got her fame by being on the first season of the Real World in ‘92, you know back when it actually seemed real. She released an album called Takin’ Mine in ’96 and then this one off single for MCA. She had the backing of Boogie Down Productions which couldn’t have hurt but in reality she wasn’t that great of a rapper. That said, “Do You” is easily the best tune I’ve heard from her.
Of those first year Real World cast members, Eric Nies is probably the most famous, then Kevin Powell, followed by Heather B.
Heavy D. & the Boyz
“Black Coffee” 1994, #57 (15 weeks) (download)
I always liked “Black Coffee” but in grand scheme it certainly wasn’t better than songs like “Nuttin’ But Love” or “Now That We Found Love.”
“I Ain’t Havin’ That” 1998, #80 (7 weeks) (download)
A duo that was sometimes Ruck and Rock and sometimes Sparsky and Dutch, this was their final charting hit. However they were part “LeFlaur LeFlah Eshkoshka” by The Fabulous Five that we’ve determined is the oddest named song in the series.
I kind of forgot that the tracks from The End of the Innocence crossed over into the ‘90s but since seven of the albums 10 tracks got airplay, I guess it was pretty inevitable. These were the fifth and sixth tracks played from the record with “New York Minute” holding up better today, not the least of which is because it will be forever linked to the 9/11 attacks in 2001.
“What Mattered Most” 1995, #90 (3 weeks) (download)
“A Man Holdin’ On (To A Woman Lettin’ Go)” 1998, #81 (12 weeks) (download)
“Hands of a Working Man” 1999, #47 (14 weeks) (download)
“Steam” 1999, #83 (12 weeks) (download)
Once again I’m realizing that there was nothing special about 90% of the country artists to break through to the pop charts in the mid to late ‘80s. I have no idea what makes this guy stand out from anyone else. All four of these sound like the same ol’ same old.
“Show Me” 1990, #62 (7 weeks) (download)
Shalamar was just so funky. Howard Hewett solo was just so quiet storm. To each his own but I preferred getting down on the one to this bedtime music from him.
Jennifer Love Hewitt
“How Do I Deal” 1999, #59 (8 weeks) (download)
Believe it or not, JLH put out her first album in 1992 at the age of 12 and released two other records before this track from the I Still Know What You Did Last Summer soundtrack. I was 23 at this point and had a huge crush on her because she was just so damn cute. These days, Tits Magee is one of the hottest women in Hollywood and it has nothing to do with her huge rack. Nothing, I swear.
“I’m Not Your Puppet” 1991, #63 (13 weeks) (download)
Think of the smooth rhyming styles of Guru, Rakim, Biggie etc and then listen to this. Hi-C is the polar opposite with “I’m Not Your Puppet,” sounding totally forced from the get-go.
Though the teen R&B group had three major hits including the #1 smash “I Like the Way (the Kissing Game)”, they haven’t stood the test of time and while I can have a conversation about lesser groups like Shai and Joe Public, Hi-Five never stayed on my radar. Despite that, they had some really good tunes, like “Just Another Girlfriend” from their self-titled debut.